BUSINESSES and homes across Dorset could benefit from faster internet connections after the government launched a nationwide Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme.
The £67million national investment will provide future-proof full fibre connections for businesses and the homes around them.
Businesses can claim up to £3,000 against the cost of gigabit-capable (1,000 megabit) internet connections, either individually or as part of a group.
Residents can benefit from the scheme too if they are part of a group project which also includes businesses, and can claim a voucher with a value of up to £500.
Around 96 per cent of properties in Dorset can already access superfast broadband – download speeds of 24 megabits per second or more. Currently only around three per cent of UK premises have access to a full fibre connection.
To check availability at your home or business visit dorsetforyou.gov.uk/superfast
Daryl Turner, Dorset County Council Cabinet member for the Natural and Built Environment, said: “I welcome this scheme. It is an opportunity for Dorset businesses to get the connectivity they need to grow. It’s also another potential route for those households without a fast, reliable connection.”
Jim Stewart, chairman of Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “This is great news for Dorset businesses. A high speed digital infrastructure is crucial to supporting local economic growth. A better connected Dorset helps to create the right conditions for businesses to thrive and for more highly skilled jobs and housing to be created.”
The scheme is only accessible through broadband service providers. Full details and a list of registered suppliers can be seen at https://gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk. The website also includes instructions on how new suppliers can register and full details and terms and conditions.
The scheme will run until March 2021 or until all available funding has been allocated.